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Jeep Wrangler (1992)

Owner: Megatron

Added: 27 September 2013 - 08:56 AM

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Jeep Wrangler (1992)


Disney Pics 003.jpg
  • Vehicle Owner: Megatron
  • Date Added: 27 September 2013 - 08:56 AM
  • Date Updated: --
  • Color: Red
  • Views: 1,356
  • Odometer: 151,000 Miles

This was my first Jeep and first build over stock. It was a bolt on build but still a build. Since this picture I have sold it to fund other builds, my family and our first house, but still claim it as my build. You may see it on a trail one day..




Megatron
27 September 2013 - 01:52 PM
While I no longer own this Jeep I still claim the rights to building it. I know its not much in the way of todays standards of off road rigs, but in its time it was cool lol. It was my 1992 YJ with the 4.0 Fuel Injected 6 cylinder with the 5 speed transmission

In 2002 I bought it from the dealership for 4000$ cash during an ice storm, one owner I might add. They didn't want to sell it because the 4x4 wasn't working and it had over 100k miles. It was set to go to auction. Well after some persistence I convinced them to sell it as is. After I gave them the money I took it across the street and found the vacuum lines on the front axle were unhooked. That was the cause of no 4x4. First fix was free lol. After that I drove it to the motel parking lot (Yes I was working on the road at this time and most of this truck was built in motel parking lots across the country lol)

Bring on the parts catalogues lol. What to buy first.. Lift kits.. Wheels and tires.. Supercharger.. Bumpers ?? o the possibilities were endless.. After buying every off-road magazine at the time, I had come up with a few things I thought I wanted and a build idea I thought I could do. Mind you, even though this was 2002 there still weren't that many web pages going and no forums that I knew of. It was old-school paperback building lol.

Well being the guy who likes the new stuff that's out I jumped on a chance to buy one of the first Skyjacker Monolinear 6" lift kits. For those who have never heard or seen them it was a 6" lift kit with only one spring per wheel. No packs if you will. Coils were here, but cost was crazy and nobody was offering a four link conversion at the time. It was possible to build your own but the market didn't fully support the hardware for it yet.

Well you cant stop with a 6" lift, you need everything else to go with it. One of the simplest things to do to an old YJ is an axle flip kit (SOA if you will). Its all but a free 4.5" of lift, well add that with the 6" I just bought... you guessed it 10.5" of lift.. yyeaa boy I was cool lol. Now to the amazement of many, that turned out to be a good idea in the end. Here is why, not all new things are good things. Lesson umm #5 if you will lol. Turns out the leading edge of spring design had a flaw, sagging. While Skyjacker makes great products, being the first to use these new products doesn't always have its benefits. Over time and extreme use these springs lost around half their lift. In the end we were sitting some 3-4" lower. Part 2 of this lesson, sitting low isn't a bad thing, not if the rest of your truck is designed right.

A couple other new products I used at the time were Z-boxes and Revolver shackles. These were items made to help a leaf spring based suspension achieve more flex. Well that they did, and then some. Unfortunately this build was in my earlier days before I had digital cameras so I don't have many good pictures to show. The Z-boxes and Revolver shackles were mounted to the frame and the eyes of the springs. They literally unfolded your attachment points from the frame giving you more droop than what the spring itself could do. Downfall you ask?? Of course, every good thing has a bad thing that comes with it, Yeng and Yang if you will. This extra flex made for some unruly wheel hop, body sway and spring warping (reason for the wheel hop). But the trade off for the extra flex was worth it. You just have to control that right foot when taking on obstacles. I ended up going with a 5th link in the rear to slow down the wheel hop. The fifth link was just a simple ladder bar that attached from your frame to the middle of your axle at the rear end housing. Todays answer is a 4 link. In the front we had to do sway bar disconnects and a track bar disconnect. Well let me cover the track bar dilemma.. If you ever find it wise to disconnect your track bar while off-roading, never never never forget to hook it back up when you hit the streets. Want to know what death wobble is? try it one time. if you don't crash consider yourself familiar with death wobble. Diploma for track bar importance... check

Just like every jeep that has been lifted over stock, mine had driveline issues. I chased this from day one of the first modification. Lift = poor driveshaft angle. Jeep 101. Like 1 million others, first answer was SYE (the old Slip Yoke Eliminator), Did it work?? Kinda lol. If I only had 4" of lift I assume it would have worked great lol. Second attack, skid plate lowering blocks. That worked all the way up until the day I added a Belly Up skid plate and removed them.. more ground clearance duh.. Well welcome back driveline vibrations.. Third plan of attack, engine lift kit. Ya that was a solution offered by a few people. Helps change the angle from the motor all the way to the rear end. Less driveline vibrations more fan in the shroud issues lol.. 4th plan of attack, cut and re-weld the spring perches to help the angle. Helped but not a lot. After that i quit worrying about it. In the end it always had a hint of vibrations, but nothing a new set of U-joints every 6 months couldn't fix for a couple weeks lol. I could change those things out blindfolded in about 8 minutes lol.. Driveline diploma.. check..

Not to butt in, but another lesson learned from this build (lesson #6 maybe). When rock crawling, vehicle lift vs. ground clearance. Two totally different things I discovered.. Vehicle lift doesn't always mean ground clearance, and no matter how many inches of lift you have it doesn't mean you can get over a parking curb. Face it, your vehicle can generally only climb over things that will fit under the lowest point of your vehicle. Now that being said, its not 100% accurate. With proper approach angles and selecting how to take on the obstacle your vehicle can clear things twice as high as your lowest hanging point. This issue lead me to stick with my Dana 30 and Dana 35 with open differentials. Cant beat these little guys for ground clearance and without lockers chance of destruction was limited. Even though I sporty some 35" TSL Boggers on 15x12 Bead locks, I never broke a shaft nor any driveline parts when wheeling. Check the pictures, she wasn't a mall crawler, well not all the time lol.

Another junkyard custom was swapping axles from the 4 cylinder jeep into my 6 cylinder version. Why you ask?? The factory 4 cylinder Jeep came with a lower gear (4.10 or 4.11 I believe) witch included a larger carrier for the ring gear. This meant you could swap the gears to 4.88's witch were much better suited for the 35" tires. Easy and cheap. The 4.10's really are a good start if changing gears isn't your thing. Enter Lesson# 8 (I think??) Use a torque wrench when tightening up bolts. Guessing leads to bolts falling out and eating up that new set of 4.88 gears.. o well I wanted the 5.13's anyway lol. That set stayed in for life lol.

Rule #7, no lockers = winch lol. Get one. I got the new Warn Ti 9000# winch the first day it was out. I had ordered the SI but it never came to be released from the factory so they hooked me up with the TI instead. The SI was to have some new mossfett control system but must have bombed on the test range, o well. The TI was the cats meow and it got me out of a few bad decisions lol. Even snagged a couple others out along the way. I cant say enough about a good winch system on any off road vehicle.

Other modifications included rock bumpers front and rear, rock sliders, body armor for the rear quarter panels, High steering cross over. Raised shock towers and Doetsch re-buildable reservoir shocks, polyurethane body mounts, stainless header and exhaust, Hella off road lights plus a bunch of other things.

One of the hardest to install was the Tera Low transfer case upgrade. It was a new front half with 4;1 low gears for a good grunt. I also threw in the Centerforce clutch upgrade since I was that close lol. The Tera Low Kit tested my confidence in moving parts. Granted it wasn't rocket science, it was a whole new thing. I slowed up and read the instructions about 100 times and did it. Worked great and is still there to this day. Great addition for crawling

Now if you can remember back to the first part of this story you will recall the part about the motel parking lots. I did 95% of these mods while traveling and jumping from motel to motel. I dint have a house or a garage. Just a company truck and trailer. I hauled it around with me and worked on it every weekend. My best times were when I was stuck in Tulsa Oklahoma. Up the street from the motel was a Jeep dealership named Chris Nichols. These guys had all the good stuff and helped me out with parts and know how. I haven't been back there in years but I assume they still exist. I spent as much money there as I could. They were all good guys and always worked me a deal and helped me when they could.

The thing that made this build easy for me was the availability of parts for the Jeep YJ. Its amazing how the aftermarket world took off with it. I will always recommend this vehicle to a first time builder or novice off road guy. There isn't anything that's not reproduced for this vehicle or redesigned to be better. I assume the TJ has made the old YJ prehistoric by now, but I still bet a good YJ can run with any ole TJ.

I have a few more stories to share later about this old YJ and a few more pictures if I can find them. Just wanted to share a bit of where I started in the off road journey.

Moses Ludel
27 September 2013 - 09:31 AM
Fantastic articulation for a leaf-sprung front axle! The 1991-95 YJ with the 4.0L chassis is a winner...Would like to see close-ups photos of the modifications, this is a seriously purpose-built Jeep YJ Wrangler! 1987-95 YJs were the pinnacle for leaf-sprung Jeep utility 4x4s, a sturdy frame to build on...

Moses

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